15 thick-skinned lemons
2 bottles of vodka, 750 ml each
3 1/4 cups sugar
5 cups water
If lemons are store-bought, wash themwell with a vegetable brush and hot water to remove any residue of pesticides or wax. Pat the lemons dry and remove the zest with a vegetable peeler.
Scrape any pith away with the tip of a knife.
Pour one bottle of vodka into a 4-qt. jar and add the zest as you remove it from the lemons. Cover jar, and let sit for 40 days, storing it at room temp. in a dark cabinet or cupboard. There is no need to stir: just sit and wait. As the limoncello sits, the vodka slowly takes on the flavor and rich yellow hue of the lemon zest.
After about 40 days, combine the sugar and water in a saucepan, bring to a boil and let cook until thickened, about 5 minutes. Let the syrup cool before adding it to the limoncello mixture, along with the other bottle of vodka. Cover and return to the cupboard for another 40 days.
Strain the limoncello into bottles and discard the lemon zest. Store the bottles in a cupboard, but keep one in the freezer so that the limoncello is icy cold when you are ready to drink it.
I have to wait 80 days now, but this was a good creative outlet for me this afternoon. After returning from being gone for two nights on a camping trip with another family, Sophie threw herself into my arms and clung to me. For quite a while. And then she took off for the neighbors' house, and I didn't see her for the rest of the afternoon. I guess this is only going to get worse.